Philippines ends Asian Games on a low note

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INCHEON, South Korea: The Philippines on Saturday ended one of its most forgettable campaigns in the Asian Games in more than two decades, triggering a call for a review of the country’s sports program.

The 150-member Philippine contingent will be bringing home a lean harvest of one gold, three silvers and 11 bronzes, good for 22nd place in the Incheon Games.

It failed to even match its output of three golds, four silvers and nine bronzes in the 2010 Games in Guangzhou, China.

The country also bagged just one gold in the 1998 Games in Bangkok, Thailand, and the 1990 Games in Beijing, China.


“We need to review the programs of our national sports associations as we’ll be preparing for some qualifying tournaments for the 2016 Olympic Games in Brazil, as well as the 2015 Southeast Asian Games in Singapore,” said Chief of Mission Richie Garcia, who is also chairman of the Philippine Sports Commission.

Garcia said “our athletes did their best and we’re proud of them.”

BMX rider Daniel Caluag, the lone gold medalist for the Philippines in Incheon, is already setting his sights on the 2016 Olympics in Brazil.

The US-based cyclist is aiming to surpass his quarterfinal finish in the 2012 London Games.

“The Olympics is still two years from now but me and my coach [Greg Romero] has already set our goal­—the Rio games. We’ve already taken steps and that includes this [Asian Games],” Caluag said.

The other Filipino medalists are Charly Suarez of boxing, and Jean Claude Saclag and Daniel Parantac of wushu (silver); and archer Paul Marlon dela Cruz, boxers Mark Barriga, Mario Fernandez and Wilfredo Lopez, karateka Mae Soriano, tae kwo do jins Benjamin Sembrano, Thomas Morrison, Mary Pelaez, Kirstie Elaine Alora and Ronna llao, and wushu artist Francisco Solis (bronze).

Karateka Gay Mabel Arevalo, the country’s last bet in the Incheon Asiad, bowed out of contention in the women’s 50 kilograms kumite, losing 8-0 to Sru Nita Sari Sukatendel of Indonesia on Saturday, a few hours before the closing ceremonies.

As expected, China dominated the Games with 151 golds, 108 silvers and 83 bronzes. Trailing far behind were South Korea (79-71-84), Japan (47-76-77), Kazakhstan (28-23-33) and Iran (21-18-18).

Thailand led the Southeast Asian countries that took part in the Games, finishing in sixth place with 12 golds, 7 silvers and 28 bronzes). Malaysia was in 14 place (5-14-14), Singapore 15th (5-6-13), Myanmar 20th (2-1-1), Vietnam 22nd (1-10-25), Cambodia 28th (1-0-0) and Laos 33rd (0-1-2).

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4 Comments

  1. Wala kasing pondo dahil ninakaw ng mga opisyal at politician ang perang nakalaan sa sports development.

  2. How many times do we have to review our sport program? We said this thing every time the game was ended and the result is the same, year after year we ended at the bottom section of the participating countries in medal tally. We dont want to select & train our athlete the right way we always go for the shortcut by hiring athletes who shoulder their training by themselves. We dont even have quality training facilities & coaches for our athletes. worst, the budget for training is so small compare to other countries & portion of this budget were pocketed by our politician/officials.

  3. As I said again and again, if sports is run by politicians, they treat it like their domain. If you only develop one sport that is backed up by popularity, then the other sports are neglected, sports that are suited for the Filipino. If the ones running sports are more concerned in naturalizing foreigners, like those NBA players, then their’s no hope for the Philippines to regain whatever is left for them in Asia. Funny, the only gold medal winner is surely a dual citizen who is trained in the United States. If he’s good enough to represent the United States, do you think he’ll represent the Philippines? One of these days, the National Basketball Team will be represented by naturalized citizens and no native filipino will ever play in the team. Besides, their are other sports that filipinos can excel but no one is interested except in Basketball where we have no chance to win in Asia with “real” filipino players.

    • Agreed on politicians just looking to get quick success with the Basketball team. As for Caluag there is no incentive for him to represent the US in the Asian Game$. The USA program has their own problems. It’s obviously more lucrative to be a big fish in a small pond (100 million people with 0 BMX athletes vs 300 million with 40k BMX athletes).